The Atlantic’s Franklin Foer claims media coverage of Biden ‘tougher than he deserves’

The kid gloves from the media haven’t been soft enough for President Joe Biden as one author expressed his belief coverage has been “tougher than he deserves.”

(Video: NBC News)

Franklin Foer, a writer for The Atlantic, has a forthcoming book about the first two years of the Biden administration entitled, “The Last Politician: Inside Joe Biden’s White House and the Struggle for America’s Future.”

While other previews had explored Vice President Kamala Harris’ focus on internal criticisms of her and an explosive reaction from the president after a report related to the Afghanistan withdrawal, NBC News’s Chuck Todd turned their discussion on “Meet the Press” toward media relations.

“You write, ‘Biden considered his poor approval rating a failure of the media, which someone neglected to note all the ways in which his administration was superior to Trump’s. It was also a failure of his own White House to effectively communicate. He complained that there weren’t enough surrogates on television defending him.’ I’m shocked to find out that a White House believes they have a communications problem,” smirked the host, “not a substance problem.”

Speaking to the president’s negative approval numbers, which had remained to the side of disapproval since the aforementioned end to America’s military presence in Afghanistan in August 2021, Foer found fault with former President Donald Trump’s relationship with the media to defend the supposed poor treatment of Biden.

“Of course, every president who suffers an upside-down approval rating is going to moan about the media, and I think that there is some truth to it in his case where Trump caused the media to go — to become so emotional, to get so engaged in covering all the high drama,” the author told Todd.

“I think with the Biden administration there’s been this desire on the part of the press to reassert its standards of objectivity,” he continued. “So think on certain measures he’s probably right. He has been covered probably tougher than he deserves.”

As previously reported, Foer’s book had also contended that the White House felt “stung” by corporate media’s reporting on the Afghan withdrawal, including from “the columnists and venerable reporters that Biden’s inner circle respected and tended to heed.”

“…in the thick of the crisis,” the author had written after covering how Biden had “exploded in frustration” upon learning while on vacation that the then-Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani had fled ahead of the Taliban marching on the capital, “Biden didn’t have time to voraciously consume the news, but he was well aware of the tough coverage.”

“‘We’re getting killed,’ he would admit. It frustrated him to no end,” detailed the author who also quoted the president telling an aide, “Either the press is losing its mind, or I am.”

Meanwhile, analysis from the Media Research Center had shown that between Jan. 1 and July 31 of this year, while Trump coverage took over roughly three-quarters of the big three networks’ coverage of the GOP presidential primary candidates, the 664 minutes he received were overwhelmingly negative at an estimated 90 percent.

Foer’s take was received as entirely laughable, with many social media users finding particular humor in his claim on the media’s attempt to “reassert its standards of objectivity.”


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